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148 votes
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Does this video show a water droplet in gravitational orbit?

The GIF was sourced from the International Space Station video by astronaut Don Pettit. The video depicts small water droplets orbiting a polyethylene knitting needle which was charged by rubbing it ...
March Ho's user avatar
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115 votes
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Are the claims made by Indian Ministers / personalities regarding ancient Indian inventions true?

Genetic science in Mahabharata Prime Minister Modi claimed that genetic science and plastic surgery existed in Ancient India. source: “We all read about Karna in the Mahabharata. If we think a little ...
Avery's user avatar
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107 votes
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Did the British navy fail to take into account the ballistics correction due to Coriolis force during WW1 Falkland Islands battle?

No. It is a complete invention of an urban myth. Unless anybody produces a Royal Navy document that even does any mention of this influence of Coriolis effect, this seems to be just untrue. A ...
LangLаngС's user avatar
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86 votes
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Do wooden building fires get hotter than 600°C?

Without acknowledging any of the conditions actually present in the church, wood fires can get much hotter than 600 °C. The maximum temperatures measured within the pile were of the order of ...
LangLаngС's user avatar
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85 votes
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In the event of a siren warning the public of a gas leak, is it actually advisable to listen to the radio when smelling gas?

The Finnish website pelastustoimi advises to listen to the radio in the event of smelling gas. Yes, but that needs to be put into context. As stated, one might think this is what one should do if one ...
Ray Butterworth's user avatar
81 votes
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Can we determine for sure if the Sun revolves around the Earth?

The referenced link is correct; all frames of reference are equally valid in general relativity -- with a catch or two. One catch is that the mathematics can get a bit ugly (or more than a bit ugly), ...
David Hammen's user avatar
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80 votes

Is there any possibility that CERN's Large Hadron Collider run 3 can be devastating?

No. There is no chance of catastrophic consequences of the CERN run. CERN Website LSAG report The simplest evidence of this comes from the fact that nothing particularly special is happening in the ...
TimRias's user avatar
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78 votes
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Has the laser at Magurele, Romania reached a tenth of the Sun's power?

It's possible they are actually talking about the rate of energy given off by the Sun that reaches the Earth. However, they are not talking about the amount of energy released, but rather the rate of ...
DenisS's user avatar
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69 votes
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Did Richard Feynman say that if all of mathematics disappeared, physics would be set back by exactly one week?

The quote is reported in: Cohen, Joel E. A Life of the Immeasurable Mind. Annals of Probability 14(4): 1139-1148 (October, 1986). DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1214/aop/1176992358 which is a review ...
Nate Eldredge's user avatar
55 votes

Do wooden building fires get hotter than 600°C?

Probably yes: According to at least one expert, the temperature in the Notre Dame fire must have been extremely high, and probably exceeded 600°C. Yesterday the Süddeutsche Zeitung, one of Germany's ...
Schmuddi's user avatar
  • 9,539
54 votes
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Do snowballs snowball?

Only when the snow is "wet", not if the snow is powdery. As this January 1910 Watson Wagon advertisement says: The popularity of the Watson continues to grow like a snowball rolling down hill ...
DavePhD's user avatar
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54 votes
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Does wetting a beer glass change the foam characteristics?

In 1953, a paper looking at some of the factors involved in beer foam answered this question almost as an incidental aside. Jackson, S. (1953). FACTORS AFFECTING BEER FOAM I. CARBON DIOXIDE EVOLUTION....
Oddthinking's user avatar
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50 votes

Did Richard Feynman say that anyone who claims to understand quantum physics is lying or crazy?

I can’t find hard evidence for the “lying or crazy” quote, but as OP already mentioned, Feynman said something very similar in content, if perhaps less colorfully phrased: I think I can safely say ...
Dan Romik's user avatar
  • 4,636
47 votes
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Did a lightning strike make a river roll and boil?

This is not a lightning strike. It's an underwater blasting explosion Snopes covered this a few days ago. Here's the article. The video was originally posted to YouTube in 2012 to host it for this ...
A Bailey's user avatar
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44 votes
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Did Albert Einstein say "the only reason for time is so that everything doesn't happen at once"?

The oldest confirmed use of any version of this quote that I was able to find is from Ray Cummings' short story The Time Professor, published in the Jan. 8, 1921 issue of Argosy All-Story Weekly (...
Gwen's user avatar
  • 556
42 votes
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Did George Biddell Airy write a paper "On Certain conditions under which a Perpetual Motion is possible"?

The claim that George Biddell Airy wrote a paper titled “On certain Conditions under which Perpetual Motion is possible” which was published in the Transactions of the Cambridge Philosophical Society ...
Gilles 'SO- stop being evil''s user avatar
38 votes

Has the laser at Magurele, Romania reached a tenth of the Sun's power?

Power of the laser This video shows interviews with people at the laser center. At 4:54 you can see the director of the center repeat the claim. In this video, that same director states that the ...
BobTheAverage's user avatar
34 votes

Do snowballs snowball?

I would have to say, yes, it does, but as evidence, one looks not at the scenario described of rolling a snowball down a hill. Instead, in a snowy area, after a significant snowfall and, especially, ...
PoloHoleSet's user avatar
  • 9,688
34 votes

Did the British navy fail to take into account the ballistics correction due to Coriolis force during WW1 Falkland Islands battle?

Rudolph Verner, the gunnery officer of the Inflexible, which took part in the battle, wrote a short set of notes about the successes and difficulties encountered during the engagement. He writes ...
HDE 226868's user avatar
  • 11.1k
33 votes

Can we determine for sure if the Sun revolves around the Earth?

TLDR: the Rabbi is correct in a very specific technical sense, but it is not helpful to think about the question in the way he advocates. Detailed answer: The Rabbi's claim raises an interesting ...
Dan Romik's user avatar
  • 4,636
30 votes

Did all iron on Earth come from outer space?

TL;DR The majority of the Earth's iron was around when the planet formed. Calculations of the mass deposited by subsequent impacts show that these impacts were comparatively insignificant in changing ...
HDE 226868's user avatar
  • 11.1k
28 votes

Do wooden building fires get hotter than 600°C?

Wood is a perfectly acceptable and common material used in metal forging even more so when it becomes partially combusted (charcoal). What really determines the heat though, is the amount of oxygen ...
jesse_b's user avatar
  • 381
26 votes

Do trackers hold their ears to the ground?

According to the 1832 book Six Months in America, volume II, at page 67: At certain seasons of the year, their tramping and bellowing may be heard at a vast distance on the plains, by putting the ...
DavePhD's user avatar
  • 106k
25 votes
Accepted

Does turning the lamp in my classroom off and on use more energy than it being turned on for 30 minutes?

This page at Cambridge University says its a myth. There is a burst of energy when you turn them on, but its equivalent to 2 seconds of run time. Also the light lifetime is not seriously affected by ...
Paul Johnson's user avatar
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24 votes
Accepted

Does water always boil at 100°C under normal atmospheric pressure?

Pure water at 1atm pressure boils at 100°C by definition (at least until 1954). However: The new definition of centigrade is different, it depends on absolute zero degrees and the triple point of ...
Sklivvz's user avatar
  • 78.6k
23 votes

"The Flat Earth Society has members all around the globe"?

I find no evidence of this being real, but I cannot prove a negative. Tineye's first record of this image appeared on May 9, 2017. When I go to The Flat Earth Society's Facebook page, this post does ...
BobTheAverage's user avatar
23 votes

Did George Biddell Airy write a paper "On Certain conditions under which a Perpetual Motion is possible"?

Airy's official autobiography, edited by his son Wilfrid and published in 1896, contains an appendix listing every paper that Airy ever published, along with when and where he published them. On ...
F1Krazy's user avatar
  • 3,713

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